Toronto’s multicultural M.O. permeates its populace and is also readily tasted within its culinary landscape. The city is teeming with BIPOC-owned restaurants, all of which can be delivered with speedy efficiency and enjoyed in the comfort of your home. So whatever you’re hankering for, from Egyptian to Southern BBQ, satisfy your cravings with some of these salivating best bets in Toronto.
This strip mall gem supplies sublime and supple wontons that are stuffed with jumbo tiger shrimp and pork. They bob delicately in slowly simmered broth with glistening egg noodles. Chef and owner Eddie Yeung takes pride in curating the finest ingredients for his dishes. Along with his signature wonton noodle bowls, people also clamor for his Cantonese-style braised brisket with verdant Gai Lan. And don’t forget to order his homemade Chili Oil – it’s a fiery concoction that will cause your system to buzz with satisfaction.
A southerner who settled in the North, owner and pitmaster Darien List approaches his Central Texas-style BBQ with the utmost quality, care, and an ample amount of patience when it comes to his slow-cooked meats. His gloriously fat-marbled brisket is the talk-of-the-town – it’s delicately sweet, succulent, and kissed with just the perfect amount of heady smoke. All that’s left is to do is saddle it with some signature companions like tender cornbread, baked beans, pulled pork, ribs, and of course, his famous peach cobbler for dessert. Then tuck in with reckless abandon, with plenty of napkins on hand… you’ll need ‘em.
As the first vegan Egyptian restaurant tucked inside the boho confines of Kensington Market, owner and chef Israa Ali has a lot to be proud of. Her vibrant, colorful dishes are inspired by her cultural background, and her signature creations include fluffy Egyptian Falafel, juicy chicken-style shawarmas, and Za’atar dusted cauliflower that’s topped with pretty-in-pink beet tahini. Can’t decide on what to order? Go for gold and get a sample platter – it’s a mix of their greatest hits and comes complete with rice, lentils, and all the fixin’s. Bonus round: call ahead (or check their Instagram) for their sweet specials, such as their cookies and cinnamon buns. And yes, they’re delectably vegan too.
La Cubana is helmed by executive chef and owner Corinna Mozo, who now boasts three locations in Toronto, all of which are eateries where you can get your Cuban comfort food fix. The staple Pressed Cuban sandwich is a must-devour item as it just sings with flavor – there’s the toasted and crispy bread along with the holy trinity of ham, pork, and cheese that deserves a *chef’s kiss*. Then, it’s perfectly counterbalanced with the zing of pickles and mustard. While it’s a relatively simple sandwich, La Cubana executes it perfectly. If you’re craving something richer, order the indulgent and unctuously textured Guava BBQ-sauced beef short rib with chimichurri. It’s topped with crispy onions and paired with golden-fried tostones, red cabbage slaw, and rice and beans.
Since 1980, this family-run operation has been dishing out authentic Filipino fare reminiscent of the flavors of their homeland. Today, they continue to serve the community-at-large with their delightful dishes and family-style meals. Bestsellers include their lavish Kamayan Kit (featuring a medley of grilled meats, seafood, and vegetables), the weekend specialty Filipino Brunch kit (featuring ube pancakes, Tocino, Filipino sweet bacon, garlic rice, and more), and signature la carte creations such as succulent Lechon Kawali (pork belly with crispy skin) and Sisig Fries (Filipino poutine with offal meat, pork belly, and chicharron).
For some MoMo magic, a.k.a. Tibetian dumplings, you can opt for delivery from chef and owner Garab D.Serdok’s two restaurant outposts whose locations are in the Little Tibet neighborhood of Parkdale and the posh dwellings of Yorkville. With either spot, be prepared to dig into some parcels of joy. The cultural influences of South Asia, which include Nepal and India, permeate every juicy dumpling morsel. The best game plan here is to order a sampling of dishes with favorites being spiced Chili Chicken Momos, ultra-creamy Butter Chicken Momos, and ultra-crispy Kurkure dumplings stuffed with either chicken, veggies, beef, or pork.
In 1919, Mr. Moshe Landwer founded his first quaint cafe in Berlin with a family-minded philosophy and an emphasis on serving quality food and drinks to his customers. Today, Cafe Landwer boasts numerous locations around the globe, including three outposts in the city that are lovingly embraced by Torontonians. Opt for a sociable fare (which can be enjoyed for breakfast, lunch, and dinner) inspired by Mediterranean and Italian cuisines. Popular delights include their famous crispy breaded chicken schnitzel, tangy tomato and red pepper shakshuka, a falafel sandwich, and indulgent halva or Nutella rugelach for dessert.
Situated in the hipster-happening environment of the Ossington neighborhood, owner Thanos Tripi brings a fresh vibrancy and an authentic approach to his Aegean food. He serves Greek dishes with a contemporary approach, and his recipes are often inspired by his beloved grandmother. Bring the flavors of Greece into your home with crowd-pleasers such as Spanakopita (filled with spinach and Greek feta), Paidakia (grilled lamb chops), Oktpodi Salata (pickled octopus salad with chickpeas, cilantro, and chili), creamy-dreamy Mushroom Pastitsio enriched with graviera cheese, bechamel, and fresh truffles, and whole grilled Aegean Sea Bass finished with lemon olive oil and Santorini capers.